Absence Of Defence Counsel Stalls Trial Of Elozino's Alleged Murderers
Trial was stalled at the resumed hearing of the murder charge against four defendants, Macaulay Desmond Oghenemaro, Ojokojo Robinson Obajero, Nwosisi Benedict Uche and Enaike Onoriode who are alleged to have murdered Elohozino Ogege a 300 level Mass Communication student of the Delta State University Abraka in November 2018.
At about 11:15 am Tuesday, when the case was called, the four defendants had been reproduced from Prison custody and were all present in court but counsel for the 4th defendant was absent from Court without any explanation.
However the prosecuting counsel from the Ministry of Justice, Omamuzo Erebe Esq, Director of Legal Drafting who led P. U. Akamagwuna Esq, M. Fole Esq and A.R. Adewuyi Esq were present in Court.
The counsel to the 1st and 2nd Defendants, S.C. Okehielem Esq and Olusegun Ajayi Esq for the 3rd Defendant were also present.
The prosecuting counsel informed the Court that the State was ready to proceed with it's case as they had a witness who was available to give evidence. He however stated that the 4th defendant's counsel, B O. Okoh Esq from the Legal Aid Council was absent from Court without explanation.
In the circumstances the trial could not proceed as the offences the defendants were facing included capital offences. He therefore applied that the matter be adjourned to ensure the 4th defendant was represented.
The learned trial Judge, Honourable Justice Flora Ngozi Azinge in her ruling ordered that hearing notice be served on the State Director of the Legal Aid Council to ensure legal representation for the 4th defendant on the next hearing date. The case was subsequently adjourned to 25th June 2019 for further hearing.
It will be recalled that the four defendants, Macaulay Desmond Oghenemaro, Ojokojo Robinson Obajero, Nwosisi Benedict Uche and Enaike Onoriode had pleaded not guilty to the 8 count charge proffered against them by the State for the alleged murder of Elohozino Ogege. The prosecution has called a total of three witnesses since the trial commenced as the Court had ordered an accelerated hearing of the matter.